TrekInk Review: Star Trek #13

IDW Publishing presents a one-shot issue of their ongoing Star Trek series this week. Star Trek #13 features Cupcake in a poignant tale of what it really means to wear a red shirt in service to Starfleet. Spoilers and more after the break.

Star Trek #13
written by Mike Johnson, art by Stephen Molnar, colors by John Rauch, lettering by Neil Uyetake, creative consultant Roberto Orci, edited by Scott Dunbier


Hendorff records a message for transmission to his parents, telling them about his life and work aboard the Enterprise. His story is woven with recollections of his first meeting with Kirk, the tragic encounter with Nero, his observations about friends like Uhura, and other crewmates, a difficult away mission where he was seriously injured protecting Commander Spock, and more. Most of all, Hendorff wants to reassure his parents. The stories they’ve heard about what it means to wear red, are just stories. When he and his colleagues in security put on the uniform, it isn’t fear they feel, it’s pride, and he’ll be fine.

Never trust a purple alien flower!


Writer Mike Johnson presents a bottle episode in this one-shot story featuring Hendorff, dubbed Cupcake by Kirk, a security officer we first met in Star Trek (2009) as a cadet, who has also appeared in several previous issues of this series. At this stage, the meme of the redshirt has embedded itself in our brains, but Johnson’s story hits its target with ease, with compassion, and with some insight into the characters of Star Trek. No matter what we may think, redshirts are not the walking dead. Hendorff has chosen to serve and wear the red shirt. I’m all too certain that nearly everyone knows someone like him. Johnson’s point is well taken. Stephen Molnar’s art is terrific in this issue. He captures the spirit of every familiar character aboard the Enterprise. John Rauch does an equally good job with colors. The landing party scenes are particularly good. There are three covers for Star Trek #13. The retailer incentive photo cover features Chekov. Tim Bradstreet’s regular cover for issue #13 is all about the red shirt, rendered without faces, which, in a way, places Hendorff’s role on the ship in sharp relief. We’re getting to know him much better than your average security officer. If you recall, in the original series episode, The Apple, Ensign Hendorff dies quickly and without fanfare on Gamma Trianguli VI, from a plant that shoots thorns. You should pick up a copy of Star Trek #13, read it, then tell me, what do you think the future holds for alt-Hendorff?

Cover: Art by Tim Bradstreet


Cover RI A: Art by Tim Bradstreet, Cover RI B: Photo cover

Star Trek: Romulans Treasury Edition
story and art by John Byrne, colors by Leonard O’Grady, lettering by Neil Uyetake and Robbie Robbins, edited by Chris Ryall

Also available this week is a collection of John Byrnes’ Romulan tales. This 72-page, 9.25-inch x 14.25-inch oversize edition reprints Alien Spotlight: Romulans and Romulans: The Hollow Crown. If you missed out on Byrnes’ work the first or second time around, third time’s the charm. Like the DC and Marvel Treasury Editions of the 1970s and 1980s, this large format reprint shows off the artist’s work very nicely. If this is the start of a new format for IDW reprints, I think we’re in for a treat.

Cover: Art by John Byrne

These comics are available at your local comic shop this week along the with the first issue of Star Trek: The Next Generation – Hive, a four-issue mini-series. Keep an eye out for TrekMovie’s review of Hive #1. IDW Star Trek comics can also be purchased online. Preview PDFs are available for TrekMovie readers.

Star Trek #13
Star Trek: The Next Generation – Hive #1
Star Trek: Romulans Treasury Edition

Star Trek #13 Star Trek: The Next Generation – Hive #1 of 4 Star Trek: Romulans Treasury Edition

Mark Martinez is an obsessive-compulsive Star Trek comics reader and collector. You can visit his website, the Star Trek Comics Checklist for more than you ever needed to know about Star Trek comics.

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